Tea, music make Sunday studying easier

Sarah LeeSarah Lee, a sophomore in biochemistry, is the newest campus blogger, sharing her experiences each week about what it’s like to be a UIC student. Read a new update every weekday from our five “I Am UIC” bloggers.


By Sarah Lee


My current state-of-being: secluded in the corner of Caribou Coffee, huddled over my laptop and textbooks while binge-drinking vanilla tea latte.

I’m quietly singing to the Alanis Morissette and Avril Lavigne songs that keep playing over the café speakers, but I should probably stop since the barista keeps giving me odd looks.

It’s a peaceful Sunday, even though as always, I’m barely keeping up with plenty of work to get done. The weekend is always too short, and this semester is just flying by. I can’t believe I registered for spring courses.

At the moment I’m just relieved to take a break from my treacherous organic chemistry homework to introduce myself to the UIC community as the newest “I am UIC” blogger.

I am a sophomore biochemistry major and Russian minor, which I am often told is an odd combination. But I studied abroad in Russia in high school and fell in love with the language, so I’ve kept up with it ever since. It’s my hope to study there again sometime in the next three years.

I am “one of those crazy pre-med students” and a member of GPPA medicine. It’s an incredible honor to be a part of that program, and one of the big lessons I take away from it is to never let myself settle for complacency, in classes or otherwise. I try to consistently challenge myself and take risks, even if it leads to a rather hectic lifestyle with long days and late night.

After a long day, I decompress by making all types of hot tea, tinkering on the piano, and reading for fun, especially young adult books from my childhood. I have awful eyesight and somehow I went from being farsighted as a toddler to extremely nearsighted now.

My go-to series to watch on Netflix is “How I Met Your Mother” but my all-time favorite shows are probably “Game of Thrones” and “Breaking Bad.”

Whenever I get a chance to head home to Naperville, I like to relax by baking with my mom, going to the movies with my brother or cheering on the Chicago Bulls with my dad. I own over 30 scarves and always have trouble picking the right one every morning. It seems like the weather is getting colder every day and I’m dreading the frigid days ahead because I get cold very easily.

I love music and couldn’t live without it. One of my favorite things to do is to craft play-lists for specific people, occasions or memories. I have all kinds of artists and genres in my iTunes library. While I listen to instrumental or piano music when I study, I indulge in Taylor Swift and radio music, especially when I work out.

I try really hard to carve out an hour a day to go to the gym, and my workouts usually consist of running, Pilates and some casual lifting. I like to challenge myself by signing up for various races throughout the year.  My longest one yet was the Chicago Half Marathon in September, and I finished the Chicago Perfect 10 (10K) this month at Navy Pier.

I work as a Peer Mentor in Courtyard residence hall for Campus Housing, and I’m planning a tea-tasting program. I’m super excited because I absolutely love tea and can’t wait to share it with my residents. In the meantime, though, I’m keeping to my corner in Caribou with my books, although I think it may be time for another latte.


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